S-10s on 20s
First, I have to say that you guys have a great mag. It gives me a lot of inspiration and ideas for fixing up my truck. I have a '99 S-10 and want to run 20-inch chrome rollers on it. I saw a black S-10 with green flames in the June '02 issue titled "10 on 20s." How did the owner get 20s on his S-10? Every tire and wheel shop in my area says that it can't be done without rubbing. They said the biggest I can stuff under my S-dime are 18s, but this will not do it for me. I want to roll 20s and keep the wheelwells, but I don't want to rub even with the steering turned lock-to-lock. Please help me and explain to me how it can be done. Thanks.
Nicholas J. Mitchell, via e-mail
If you're planning on airbagging your truck, or lowering it, then there will be some things you'll need to consider to squeeze a set of dubs on your ride. Since you mentioned that you plan on keeping your wheelwells, if you 'bag the truck, your frame will not lay on the ground with them intact. If your only goal is to fit 20-inch wheels at stock height, you just need the right wheel and tire combination. We're told a 20x8-inch wheel with a 245/35R20 tire will work on a truck at stock height. If you plan on going lower, such as with an adjustable suspension, it will be tough to avoid any rubbing on the inner fenderwells. For the real ins and outs of running dubs on your S-10, check with Bobby at Sadistic Iron Werks at (760) 403-5159. He has plenty of experience making big wheels fit on little trucks and can let you know the particulars of what it would take to airbag your truck and fit the 20-inch rollers without rubbing. Good luck! And send us a photo of your truck with the new rollers for our Readers' Rides section.
No Boats Here
First, let me commend you on a nice magazine. Thankfully, it's not crammed full of ads so much it overwhelms the articles - and there are no damn boats! Thanks for doing some performance installs on the new Dodge Ram. I'm glad someone is taking notice of this inexpensive hot rod. However, please do some comparison testing on the performance aftermarket products. Most installs are simple enough, but with the market getting flooded with more and more manufacturers every day, how do you chose what is the best product to buy?
For example, there are no fewer than seven companies selling better air filters than the stock one. OK, most probably do just that. But before I spend $50 to $75 for a filter (or $100 to $200 for a cold-air intake system) how about some comparison figures? You guys do comparisons of the trucks all the time, but nobody is doing comparisons of what matters most.
I noticed an install in your sister mag, Truckin', of a cold-air system on a Hemi Ram. The net gain was listed at 19 hp for a price of $150. Not bad, but why spend that much if just putting a free-flowing filter would do the same (for $100 less!)? Please do some comparison testing of performance parts, such as exhaust, intakes, brakes, tires, and even wheels. There are at least 200 manufactures of wheels, and I am sure they aren't all as good as the next. At least you can try and list a guide to the majority of them with the weight of the most common sizes - 18 and 20 inches - which is one of the critical points of buying a wheel besides load capacity and overall strength. Thanks again for a nice mag, and the (too few) fine ladies inside.
Duane Garrett, Bertrand, Missouri
Thanks for the input and the compliments. And, no, you won't find any boats in Sport Truck magazine. Since you read the Hemi Ram upgrades articles we ran in the February issue, maybe you missed the sidebar in the B&B dual exhaust story about the addition of only a performance air filter and what we gained at the dyno. On the dyno, an Airaid Premium Replacement Filter netted an additional 3 horsepower over the stock element. So in reality, you won't gain as much with a performance air filter as you would with a complete air intake system. But the new filter will improve throttle response, and oftentimes boost fuel economy.
Your point about comparisons is very well taken. Unfortunately, it's not that easy to accomplish. Today's fuel-injected trucks take about 300 miles before they learn any add on. While some folks will tell you differently, we can document that on a chassis dyno. That's why for the most part, we dyno-test any performance part we put on a truck. We traditionally find that manufacturer power claims are highly overrated at best, or are confusing since they often claim crankshaft power instead of rear-wheel horsepower. For example, in real-world chassis dyno-testing, we've seen between 8-16 rear-wheel horsepower gains on late-model trucks with aftermarket air intake systems. On the surface, that may not seem like a lot, but due to better intake and exhaust tuning from the factory, and improved computer calibrations, the factory isn't leaving as much on the table as it did in the past. So, 8-18 rear-wheel horsepower is a fairly good gain.
As for head-to-head comparisons, logistically, that's a lot of time and money that we don't have. And while one "winner" emerges, the rest of the folks in the test are angry they "lost" and pull their advertising. Also, in reality, the numbers gained from dyno-testing the products really are for one particular vehicle on one particular day. There's no guarantee they'll work the same on your truck. We understand you want the very best stuff for your truck when it comes to aftermarket performance parts, so chose wisely. Buy brand-name products and don't be afraid to ask for dyno results from the manufacturers to back up their claims. As for the wheel deal, stay tuned: We're working on a special wheel section as we speak.